The Kyocera Brigadier is now offered via Verizon, and the display on the mid-range handset is protected by sapphire glass. Apple has used sapphire glass to cover and protect the camera lens on the iPhone, ever since the release of the Apple iPhone 5. It has used the material to protect the fingerprint scanner embedded in the home button, since Touch ID launched with the Apple iPhone 5s last year. Speculation has Apple using sapphire glass in replace of Gorilla Glass 3 on the display of selected 4.7 inch Apple iPhone 6 models this year. If Apple does launch a 5.5 inch phablet as rumored, certain versions of that model are expected to also feature screens made of sapphire glass.
LG is using the material to protect the camera lens on certain smartphone models. Expected to do the same shortly, are ZTE, Huawei, Xiaomi, and Samsung. At this moment, the number one use of sapphire glass on smartphones is indeed, as a covering for the camera. If Apple does use the material to protect the displays on some of its iPhone models this year, you can expect to see more manufacturers following Apple for 2015, and that would explain the surge in sapphire use expected by the Taiwan-based sapphire producers.